HL Deb 29 January 1828 vol 18 cc1-4

The Session was this day opened by Commission. The Lords Commissioners were, Lord Chancellor Lyndhurst, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Earl of Shaftesbury, and Lord Ellenborough. The Usher of the Black Rod having summoned the Commons, the Speaker, attended by a number of Members, appeared at the bar; when the Lord Chancellor proceeded to read His Majesty's Speech to both Houses, as follows:— My Lords, and Gentlemen, We are commanded by His Majesty to acquaint you, that His Majesty continues to receive, from all Foreign Princes and States, assurances of their desire to maintain the relations of amity with this Country; and that the Great Powers of Europe participate in the earnest wish of His Majesty to cultivate a good understanding upon all points which may conduce to the preservation of Peace. His Majesty has viewed for some time past, with great concern, the state of affairs in the East of Europe. For several years a contest has been carried on between the Ottoman Porte and the Inhabitants of the Greek Provinces and Islands, which has been marked on each side by excesses revolting to humanity. In the progress of that Contest, the Rights of Neutral States, and the Laws which regulate the intercourse of civilized Nations, have been repeatedly violated, and the peaceful Commerce of His Majesty's Subjects has been exposed to frequent interruption, and to depredations, too often aggravated by acts of violence and atrocity. His Majesty has felt the deepest anxiety to terminate the calamities, and avert the dangers, inseparable from hostilities, which constitute the only exception to the general tranquillity of Europe. Having been earnestly entreated by the Greeks to interpose His good offices, with a view to effect a reconciliation between them and the Ottoman Porte, His Majesty concerted measures for that purpose, in the first instance, with the Emperor of Russia, and subsequently with his Imperial Majesty and the King of France. His Majesty has given directions that there should be laid before you Copies of a Protocol signed at Saint Petersburgh by the Plenipotentiaries of His Majesty and of his Imperial Majesty the Emperor of Russia, on the 4th of April, 1826, and of the Treaty entered into between His Majesty and the Courts of the Tuileries and of Saint Petersburgh, on the 6th of July, 1827. In the course of the measures adopted with a view to carry into effect the object of the Treaty, a collision, wholly unexpected by His Majesty, took place in the Port of Navarin between the Fleets of the Contracting Powers and that of the Ottoman Porte. Notwithstanding the valour displayed by the Combined Fleet, His Majesty deeply laments that this conflict should have occurred with the Naval Force of an ancient Ally; but he still entertains a confident hope that this untoward event will not be followed by further hostilities, and will not impede that amicable adjustment of the existing differences between the Porte and the Greeks, to which it is so manifestly their common interest to accede. In maintaining the National Faith by adhering to the engagements into which His Majesty has entered, His Majesty will never lose sight of the great objects to which all his efforts have been directed—the termination of the contest between the hostile parties.—the permanent settlement of their future relations to each other—and the maintenance of the repose of Europe upon the basis on which it has rested since the last general Treaty of Peace. His Majesty has the greatest satisfaction in informing you, that the purposes for which His Majesty, upon the requisition of the Court of Lisbon, detached a Military Force to Portugal have been accomplished. The obligations of good faith baying been fulfilled, and the safety and independence of Portugal secured, His Majesty has given orders that the forces now in that country should be immediately withdrawn. We are commanded by His Majesty to acquaint you, that His Majesty has concluded Treaties of Amity and Commerce with the Emperor of Brazil, and with the United States of Mexico; copies of which will, by His Majesty's commands, be laid before you. Gentlemen of the House of Commons, His Majesty has ordered the estimates for the Current year to be laid before you. They have been prepared with, every regard to economy, consistent with the exigency of the public service. We are commanded, by. His Majesty to recommend to your early attention an Inquiry into the State of the Revenue and Expenditure of the country. His Majesty is assured, that it will be satisfactory to you to learn, that, notwithstanding the diminution which has taken place in some branches of the Revenue, the total amount of receipt during the last year has not disappointed the expectations which were entertained at the commencement of it. My Lords and Gentlemen, His Majesty has commanded us to inform you, that a considerable increase has taken place in the export of the principal articles of British manufacture. This improvement of our Foreign Trade has led to a more general employment of the population, and affords a satisfactory indication of the continued abatement of those commercial difficulties, which recently affected so severely the National Industry. His Majesty commands us to assure you, that he places the firmest reliance upon your continued endeavours to improve the condition of all classes of his subjects, and to advance the great object of His, Majesty's solicitude, the prosperity and. happiness of his People.